[meta] How do I decide when a question is answered?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 22, 2012 at 8:45 PM

So, I'm a newbie. I've posted a few questions, have gotten some nice answers, have given a click to answers I like but I don't know when to decide that a question is answered. I'm afraid that if I mark a question as answered too soon then others will be discouraged from answering it. Am I supposed to go back to my questions at some point in the future (a week? two weeks?) and pick the answer I like best?


on March 22, 2012
at 08:55 PM

Thanks for asking this--I've always wondered the same thing. Also, I think designating one of the responses as the best answer has an impact on the "reputation points" the respondent receives. In case people care about that. I confess I often give more weight to responses from people with thousands and thousands of points....

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3 Answers

best answer


on March 22, 2012
at 09:25 PM

This is where PH sort of differs in spirit from the usual sort of StackExchange Q&A. In the latter cases you usually have one or more answers which work (software snippet, configuration, the obscure command you were looking for, etc.) and then you can accept the first answer or the best answer that is also correct.

Adopting the Paleo lifestyle is a long term process and we as the community are still co-learning for the most part. This can lead to few cut-and-dried answers for the variety and sheer number of questions that we have on this site. So what would make an answer best?

My advice is to consider, when asking the question, what you would want to see in an accepted answer to your question, and how open-ended your question is. If you get something that perfectly matches your concept, you should feel free to accept that answer no matter when it comes in. If you want to leave things more open-ended, forget about accepting any answer for a while. There's no time limit on when you can accept an answer. If you're asking a survey question like "What milestones have you hit lately?" maybe you should forego accepting any answer at all. Let the fact that questions don't necessarily have correct and incorrect answers free you from worrying too much about whether you're granting the "right" answer special status.

Welcome to PaleoHacks, Sol!



on March 22, 2012
at 09:24 PM

If you try it and it actually works.



on March 22, 2012
at 09:12 PM

Usually you can go back and mark it by the end of the day or next day. Assuming you get an answer you like...

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